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Tampa Bay Times from St. Petersburg, Florida • Page 13
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Tampa Bay Times from St. Petersburg, Florida • Page 13

Tampa Bay Timesi
St. Petersburg, Florida
Issue Date:
Extracted Article Text (OCR)

TIMES WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 9, 1992 33 Mstro 4 V. Letter heatc up Senate race No wonder Don Sullivan and Mary Grizzle are political opponents. They sure do see things differently. What Sullivan calls a "conciliatory" letter ii ir (to ir State Sen. Mary Grizzle says the letter from opponent Don Sullivan is a threat letter saw things differently.

"He's very clearly saying, 'If your special interest doesn't cough up 500 bucks, don't count on my vote in said Jade Moore, executive director of the Pinellas Classroom Teachers Association, which backs Grizzle. "It's a little heavy handed." Grizzle called the letter "unethical" and a "sleaze tactic." But Sullivan says Grizzle's criticism of the letter "is a desperate attempt by an incumbent to save her seat." "I am responding to the fact that she is receiving a tremendous amount of money from outside the district," Sullivan said. "All I want is for them to consider the fact that I won an election against a 30-year incumbent and please stay out of it." Campaign records show that Grizzle has received money from a variety of PACs, including the banking, car rental and tobacco industries. They also show that Sullivan has received contributions from various medical associations and more than $18,000 from individual doctors. JENNIFER ORSI support your cause have told me they are unhappy with your support of Mary Grizzle." The letter says Sullivan is confident of a win in the runoff and urges contributors to "rethink your financial support for her (Grizzle's) campaign.

"I want to be able to respond without reservation to my friends here at home who encourage me to seriously consider your agenda for the coming year. Please feel free to call me anytime to discuss the issues," the letter states. "I'm really appalled, and I think the voters that voted in the District 22 Senate race should feel insulted," Grizzle said. "I think it's a blatant threat." Sullivan, who won 49 percent of the vote in this month's Republican primary and nearly defeated Grizzle outright, said the letter was sent to 67 lobbyists and political action committees "outside the district" who have donated to Grizzle's campaign. "The tone of the letter and the wording of the letter is very conciliatory.

All we asked was please let the local voters decide this election," Sullivan said. "There was no threat." Some Grizzle supporters who received the asking special interests to stay out of the race for state Senate District 22, Grizzle sees as a "blatant threat" to her supporters. Sullivan, a Seminole surgeon, faces Grizzle, the incumbent, in a runoff Oct. 1 that will decide the race. With only about three weeks to go, both candi Here's a look at what's happening on the Suncoast, compiled from staff reports of events around the region.

St. Petersburg PlrwIlM dates accused each other Tuesday of dirty campaigning. At issue is a letter Sullivan sent this week to some Grizzle campaign contributors. It says in part, "I am writing you because my friends who are members of your organization or .1 Candidates spar at USF forum TAMPA Bill James and Harry Lee Coe shared an audience of more than 100 people Tuesday night to talk about the criminal justice system, but it wasn't a campaign debate. Technically, the candidates for Hillsborough state attorney were just two panelists on a forum about criminal justice hosted by the University of South Si Gandy Boulevard path to tho future? Gandy Boulevard, a four-lane road known for its dog track, strip shopping centers and seafood shacks, soon may be ready for the big time.

The Florida Department of Transportation is considering a plan to turn Gandy into a freeway, bypassing the stoplights on the Tampa side and widening the Pinellas portion to six lanes. Once the project is built, the new Gandy freeway could be a key link between Interstate 275 in Pinellas and the Crosstown Expressway in Tampa. Commuters who normally use the congested Howard Frankland Bridge might find the new route quicker. "The idea is to make it as attractive a route to get into the Tampa area as the interstate," said Tom Thomson, executive director of the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization. But no one knows when the $210-million project will be built.

Although the state has immediate plans to replace the aging westbound span of the Gandy b2d At USF, Bill James, above, and Harry Lee Coe debated crime. Florida Area Community Civic Association. Joining James and Coe were Tampa defense lawyer Barry Cohen and Sheriffs Maj. Ron Poindexter. Both men seized on juvenile crime as a root problem, while calling for more prevention at one end and more jail space at the other.

"Is it time for reform? You bet it is," said Coe. In his opening remarks, Coe, a retired circuit judge with a reputation for handing down long sentences, said the criminal justice system needs more balance between prevention and punishment. IH Bridge, officials aren sure when they will be able to afford the freeway on each side of the bridge. The agency is holding a workshop this afternoon in Tampa to hear what the public has to say. County and state plans say the freeway will be needed by the year 2010 because existing roads won't be enough to handle all the traffic.

The bridge carries about 25,000 cars a day and is expected to The public information workshop on the proposed Gandy freeway will be from 5 to 8 p.m. today at the Robinson High School auditorium, 6311 Lois Ave. in Tampa. Photo by Soa World Helping hands A pygmy sperm whale found more than a week ago on St. Petersburg Beach is offered a fish recently by Pedro Ramos, a Sea World of Florida animal care specialist.

The female whale and her calf were found stranded on the beach and are recovering at Marine Mammal Rehabilitation Facility in the Orlando park. Since Aug. 31 both animals remain in critical condition and are receiving round-the-clock care. But when it came to specifics, Coe showed a lot more familiarity with the latter than the former. "There's no sense talking about prevention until we have deference and punishment," Coe said.

The place to start, he suggested, is with young offenders. James sounded a little more like a candidate, citing statistics and the accomplishments of his office, and taking issue with Coe on one point. Coe suggested the need for a crime prevention council, composed of representatives from many agencies and the community. James said such a group already exists, and that his office is an active member. "We've got to strengthen the basic institutions, the family, schools and religious community," James said.

BRUCE VIELMETTI Tuesday at Tampa General Hospital. His brothers, Michael and Keith Hitchcock; their niece, Natalie Bostick; and her boyfriend, Carlos Paredes, died in the accident. The investigation initially was hampered by a lack of witnesses. Mofield said investigators were interviewing two people late Tuesday who called after hearing about the wreck, including one caller who claimed to have narrowly missed being hit by Livingston's car. Two blood-alcohol reports on Harry C.

Livingston, the driver who was headed the wrong way on 1-75, had not been returned Tuesday to the medical examiner's office or the Florida Highway Patrol. Highway Patrol Lt. Harry Mo-field said investigators still aren't sure why Livingston, who died in the crash, was headed south at 5 a.m. in the northbound lane of 1-75. His 1986 Cadillac slammed into the Suzuki, killing four people.

A fifth passenger, Scott Hitchcock, was in critical condition late 4 crash victims died of hoad, chost injuries TAMPA Five people killed Sunday when a 58-year-old man drove the wrong way on Interstate 75 and slammed into a Suzuki Samurai died of blunt trauma to the head and chest, according to Hillsborough County Medical Examiner reports released Tuesday. carry at least 67,000 in 20 years. Yet the DOT's (five-year plan doesn't include any construction monkey for the Gandy freeway. Officials of the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce say the freeway is vital to the city's I economic health.

They say it could finally eliminate invisible barrier between Hillsborough and Pi- nellas that keeps many people from doing business I across county lines. "The traffic on the Tampa side is so heavy that fit's a major impediment," said Joel Giles, a St. Petersburg lawyer and chairman of chamber's 'transportation council. But Dennis Roper, a radio traffic reporter, said 'traffic is so light on the Gandy it may not justify a new freeway. "The Gandy is the most underutilized bridge we "have," said Roper, a reporter for WMTX-FM.

"You could fire a cannon down the middle of it now and not thit anybody." Roper says other projects, such as improving the Courtney Campbell Parkway in Tampa, could provide more benefit for the money. TIi i Ka fltnAir riia'f ramQina nAi fliA trn rf i UUI vjauujr fjiyjti.k ibmauia inai uiv 'the priority list tor finellas and Hillsborough plan- rning agencies because officials want to improve -connections between the two counties and provide a -better evacuation route for hurricanes. The state is considering four alignments in Tampa that would either elevate the four-lane hands of some of those on the list. On Aug. 7, investigators rushed to seize bank records and arrest bank president Frank Pupello and his son, bank vice president Michael Pupello.

Investigators still are trying to determine how the Key Bank inquiry was compromised. Documents released last week show the focus is on former Hillsborough Sheriff's Deputy Rickey O. Dawes, whose fingerprints ended up on a list of suspects, and on several reputed mobsters who somehow obtained copies. Dawes hasn't been charged with a crime and his attorney says Dawes knows nothing of the list. "If they've got that information (on the fingerprints)," said Manny Lopez, Dawes' attorney, "I don't know why they haven't charged him." The suspect list is a four-page, handwritten document titled, "Possible Targets." On it are the names of 13 people associated with the operation of the bank, including Frank and Mike Pupello, bank auditor Luciano Prida and bank attorney Michael Freedman, husband of Tampa Mayor Sandy Freed-man.

Also listed are the names of 27 bank customers, including a handful of men associated with the late Mafia boss Santo Trafficante Jr. They include Frank Ragano, longtime attorney for Trafficante; Vincent Lo Scalzo and Frank Alba-no, identified by intelligence sources as members of the Trafficante crime network, and Santo Trafficante III, the nephew of Santo Trafficante Jr. So far, the only person accused of a crime as a result of the leaked list is Michael Pupello. He has been charged with perjury for lying to prosecutors about where he got the list and what he did with it. Investigators apparently became aware of the list's circulation while monitoring wiretapped calls coming into the bank.

JEFF TESTERMAN and BILL DURYEA freeway above the existing road or route some or all Investigators search for bank inquiry leak TAMPA The investigative surveillance of Key Bank of Florida began in a dingy second-story office across the street from the bank. The office was marked by a big wooden sign with the painted words, "Ace Aviation." The phony aviation business, opened in mid-May, was a front. Behind the facade, members of a 30-member task force monitored wiretaps on 10 of the bank's phone lines and listened to conversations picked up by hidden listening devices. The surveillance came to a premature end in early August. Word of the investigation into money laundering and racketeering was on the streets.

A leaked list of suspects had somehow fallen into the of the freeway a half-mile south onto a railroad "corridor. The freeway would follow the rail corridor Dale Mabry Highway and then travel north to -connect with the Crosstown. On the Pinellas side, the freeway would have six 'lanes with interchanges for the Derby Lane dog track, Snug Harbor Road and the Gandy beach areas. BILL ADAIR Man dies after THE REGION I being shot HERNANDO during argument PETERSBURG One man killed and another injured Tuesday evening when a shooting broke out as the two men fought inside a St. Petersburg house, police said.

The men were talking inside a home at 1227 28th Ave. shortly after 6 p.m., said St. Petersburg Police Lt. Gary Hitchcox. Both men, who were not identi-cfied pending notification of their families, were armed with hand- guns, Hitchcox One of the weapons was automatic.

"The two were engaged in an argument and a shooting ensued," house for help. Thomas Panpinto, 71, called police when the bleeding man came to his door. "He told me to call 911 and then he ran back toward the house," Panpinto said. Though the man had lived next door, Panpinto said he didn't know him. Another neighbor, Cathy O'Connor, described that man who she knew only as "Jimmy" as a polite, "hometown kind of guy," who moved to Florida from Colorado.

He was being treated at Bayfront Medical Center. The second man was rushed to Bayfront, where he died at 6:46 p.m., Hitqhcox said. I Before police arrived at the scene, a woman who had witnessed the shooting drove away, Hitchcox said. Police were searching for her Tuesday night. MONICA DAVEY in Vrablic' car, was taken to Bayfront Medical Center, where she is listed in critical condition, a spokeswoman said.

No charges were filed Tuesday. Machete-waving man accused in burglary try ST. PETERSBURG A 43-year-old man was accused of waving a machete at five people after breaking into one of their homes, jail records showed. Ober Lee Goolsby was charged with five counts of aggravated assault and attempted burglary In the Monday incident, the Pinellas County Jail records said. Arrest affidavits said Goolsby of 4120 11th Ave.

broke into Robin Barnes' home on Ninth Avenue and then swung a machete at the people inside. Goolsby, an employee of a plant nursery, was being held at the Pinellas County Jail on a $25,000 bail. St. Petersburg Police officers seized the machete. test and refused further tests, the Sheriff's Office reported Tuesday.

Steele arrested him about 1 a.m. Sunday on a charge of drunken driving. On the way to the Hernando County Jail, less than a mile away, Baggett accused the deputy of stealing his boots. Steele reported that two pairs of boots were left in the pickup. PINELLAS Girl, 17, hospitalized after two-car collision ST.

PETERSBURG A 17-year-old St. Petersburg girl was in critical condition after an early morning crash on 22nd Avenue in St. Petersburg. Police say Kathleen J. Vrablic, who was driving a 1990 Honda, attempted to turn left from 22nd Avenue onto the Interstate 275 entrance ramp.

She was struck by a 1982 Chevrolet driven by Dorothy Hughlett Ethridge. Tabitha Burford, who was riding Truck in road was running but driver asleep at wheel Deputy William Steele, patrolling Hernando County during the Labor Day weekend graveyard shift, came upon a pickup truck in the middle of U.S. 41 at Spring Hill Drive. The motor was running and the lights were on, but something wasn't right. The truck's transmission was in drive, but the driver had his foot on the brake.

And, Steele reported, the man was snoring. Steele shook the driver, Charles Lawrence Baggett, who awoke and shouted, "I'm waiting for my wife!" He told the deputy his wife was In the nearby Circle convenience store. He also said he thought he was about 30 miles away in Hillsborough County, not far from his home. He said he pulled over to get some sleep, falling to realize that he never made it off the road. Baggett failed a counting it intuitu saiu.

ne wuuiu nui say what the argument was about. One man was shot in the arm, Hitchcox said. He ran from the gray frame home to a neighboring.

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